For other uses see 1942 (disambiguation).
Year 1942 (MCMXLII) was a common year starting on Thursday (the link will display the full 1942 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar.
Events of 1942
(Below, many events of World War II have the "WWII" prefix.)
The Japanese capture Kuala Lumpur.
Top United States military leaders hold their first formal meeting to discuss American military strategy in the war.
The Japanese Navy launches an air raid on Trincomalee in Ceylon (Sri Lanka); the Royal Navy aircraft carrier HMS Hermes and Royal Australian Navy destroyer HMAS Vampire are sunk off the country's East Coast.
By order of the Vichy France government headed by Pierre Laval, French police officers round-up 13,000-20,000 Jews and imprison them in the Winter Velodrome.
In Washington, DC, six German would-be saboteurs are executed (two others were cooperative and received life imprisonment instead).
- November 2 - A USAF squadron, including B-24 Liberator's, intercepts many Luftwaffe patrols off the coast of Oran, Algeria.
- November 3 - WWII - Second Battle of El Alamein: German forces under Erwin Rommel are forced to retreat during the night.
- November 8 - WWII
- November 9 - WWII: U.S serviceman Edward Leonski is hanged at Melbourne's Pentridge Prison for the "Brown-Out" murders of 3 women in May.
- November 10 - WWII: In violation of a 1940 armistice, Germany invades Vichy France, following French Admiral François Darlan's agreement to an armistice with the Allies in North Africa.
- November 12 - WWII - Battle of Guadalcanal: A naval battle near Guadalcanal starts between Japanese and American forces.
- November 13 - WWII - Battle of Guadalcanal: Aviators from the USS Enterprise sink the Japanese battleship Hiei.
- November 15 - WWII:
- The Battle of Guadalcanal ends: Although the United States Navy suffers heavy losses, it retains control of Guadalcanal.
- A BOAC scheduled passenger flight, a DC-3 with registration G-AGBB, (formerly KLM PH-ALI, Ibis), enroute between Lisbon and Bristol, is attacked over the Bay of Biscay by German fighters. Although damaged, it escapes and lands in England. Other attacks follow on the same aircraft and scheduled route: April 19 and June 1, 1943 (fatal).
- November 19 - WWII - Battle of Stalingrad: Soviet Union forces under General Georgy Zhukov launch the Operation Uranus counter-attacks at Stalingrad, turning the tide of the battle in the USSR's favor.
- November 21 - The completion of the Alaska Highway (also known as the Alcan Highway) is celebrated (however, the "highway" is not usable by general vehicles until 1943).
- November 22 - WWII - Battle of Stalingrad: The situation for the German attackers of Stalingrad seems desperate during the Soviet counter-attack Operation Uranus, and General Friedrich Paulus sends Adolf Hitler a telegram saying that the German Sixth Army is surrounded.
- November 23 - A German U-boat sinks the S.S. Ben Lomond off the coast of Brazil. One crewman, Chinese second steward Poon Lim, is separated from the others and spends 130 days adrift until he is rescued on April 3, 1943.
- November 26 - The movie Casablanca premières at the Hollywood Theater in New York City.
- November 27 - WWII: At Toulon, the French navy scuttles its ships and submarines to keep them out of Nazi hands.
- November 28
- February 1 - Terry Jones, Welsh actor and writer
- February 2 - Graham Nash, American (English-born) rock musician (CSNY)
- February 5 - Roger Staubach, American football player
- February 9 - Carole King, American singer and composer
- February 12 - Ehud Barak, Prime Minister of Israel
- February 13 - Peter Tork, American musician and actor
- February 14
- February 15 - Sherry Jackson, American actress
- February 19 - Paul Krause, American football player
- February 20
- February 21 - Margarethe von Trotta, German actress, film director, and writer
- February 24 - Joseph Lieberman, American politician
- February 25 - Karen Grassle, American actress
- February 27
- February 28 - Brian Jones, English musician (The Rolling Stones) (d. 1969)
- May 2 - Jacques Rogge, Belgian International Olympic Committee president
- May 3 - Vera Caslavska, Czech gymnast
- May 5 - Tammy Wynette, American country singer (d. 1998)
- May 8 - Terry Neill, Northern Irish footballer and football manager
- May 9 - John Ashcroft, United States Attorney General
- May 10 - Youssouf Sambo Bâ, Burkinabé politician
- May 12 - Ian Dury, British musician (d. 2000)
- May 17 - Taj Mahal, American singer and guitarist
- May 18
- May 19 - Gary Kildall, American computer scientist (d. 1994)
- May 20 - David Proval, American actor
- May 22
- May 23 - Gabriel Liiceanu, Romanian philosopher
- May 26 - Levon Helm, American musician (The Band)
- May 28 - Stanley B. Prusiner, American scientist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
- July 2 - Vicente Fox, President of Mexico
- July 4
- July 7 - Carmen Duncan, Australian actress
- July 8 - Janice Pennington, American model
- July 9 - Richard Roundtree, American actor
- July 10
- July 13
- July 15 - Mil Máscaras, Mexican professional wrestler
- July 18 - Adolf Ogi, member of the Swiss Federal Council
- July 23 - Myra Hindley, English murderer
- July 24 - Chris Sarandon, American actor
- July 27 - Dennis Ralston, American tennis player
- July 28 - Kaari Utrio, Finnish writer
- July 29 - Tony Sirico, American actor
- August 1 - Jerry Garcia, American musician (Grateful Dead) (d. 1995)
- August 2 - Isabel Allende, Chilean writer
- August 4 - David Lange, Prime Minister of New Zealand (d. 2005)
- August 7 - Garrison Keillor, American writer and radio host
- August 17 - Roshan Seth, British Indian actor
- August 18 - Judith Keppel, first person to win £1,000,000 on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?
- August 19 - Fred Dalton Thompson, American politician and actor
- August 20 - Isaac Hayes, American singer and actor (d. 2008)
- August 27 - "Captain" Daryl Dragon, American musician (The Captain and Tennille)
- August 28 - Sterling Morrison, American musician (d. 1995)
- August 31 - Isao Aoki, Japanese golfer
- September 1 - John Lange, American scientist
- September 14 - Bernard MacLaverty, Irish writer
- September 15 - Wen Jiabao, Premier of the People's Republic of China
- September 17 - Desmond Lynam, British TV presenter
- September 18 - Gabriella Ferri, Italian singer
- September 19 - Freda Payne, American singer and actress
- September 22 - David Stern, American commissioner of the National Basketball Association
- September 24 - Ilkka "Danny" Lipsanen, Finnish singer
- September 28 - Marshall Bell, American actor
- September 29
- September 30 - Frankie Lymon, American singer (d. 1968)
- October 1 - Gunther Wallraff, German investigative journalist
- October 6
- October 7 - Ronald Baecker, American computer scientist
- October 11 - Amitabh Bachchan, Indian actor
- October 12 - Melvin Franklin, American musician (The Temptations) (d. 1995)
- October 13 - Jerry Jones, American football team owner
- October 14 - Evelio Javier, Filipino politician, lawyer, and civil servant (d. 1986)
- October 15
- October 19 - Andrew Vachss, American author and attorney
- October 20
- October 21 - Elvin Bishop, American musician
- October 22 - Annette Funicello, American actress
- October 23 - Michael Crichton, American author (d. 2008)
- October 26 - Bob Hoskins, British actor
- October 29 - Bob Ross, American painter and television presenter (d. 1995)
- October 31 - David Ogden Stiers, American actor and voice-over artist
- November 1
- November 2 - Stefanie Powers, American actress
- November 8 - Angel Cordero Jr., Puerto Rican jockey
- November 8 - Fernando Sorrentino, Argentine writer
- November 10
- November 15 - Daniel Barenboim, Argentine-born pianist and conductor
- November 17
- November 18
- November 20 - Joe Biden, U.S. Vice President
- November 22 - Francis K. Butagira, Ugandan ambassador
- November 24 - Billy Connolly, Scottish comedian
- November 26 - Khalil Kalfat, Egyptian intellectual and writer
- November 27
- November 28 - Paul Warfield, American football player
- November 29 - Philippe Huttenlocher, Swiss baritone
- December 4 - Gemma Jones, British actress
- December 6 - Peter Handke, Austrian novelist
- December 7 - Peter Tomarken, American game-show host (Press Your Luck) (d. 2006)
- December 9 - Dick Butkus, American football player
- December 11 - Donna Mills, American actress
- December 12 - Peter Sarstedt, British musician
- December 17 - Paul Butterfield, American musician (d. 1987)
- December 20 - Bob Hayes, American athlete
- December 21
- December 23 - Jorma Kaukonen, American musician (Jefferson Airplane, Hot Tuna)
- December 27 - Charmian Carr, American actress
- December 29 - Rajesh Khanna, Indian actor
- December 30
- December 31 - Andy Summers, English guitarist
- January 6 - Henri de Baillet-Latour, Belgian International Olympic Committee president (b. 1876)
- January 14 - Porfirio Barba-Jacob, Colombian poet and writer (b. 1883)
- January 16
- January 22 - Walter Sickert, English Impressionist painter (b. 1860)
- January 26 - Felix Hausdorff, German mathematician (suicide) (b. 1868)
- February 14 - Mirosław Ferić, Polish pilot of the No. 303 Squadron in Northolt (b. 1915)
- February 19 - Frank Abbandando, American gangster (executed) (b. 1910)
- February 22 - Stefan Zweig, Austrian writer (suicide with wife) (b. 1881)
- February 28 - Karel Doorman, Dutch admiral (sinking ship) (b. 1889)
- March 1
- March 8 - José Raúl Capablanca, Cuban chess player (b. 1888)
- March 10 - William Henry Bragg, English physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1862)
- March 21 - J.S Woodsworth, Canadian politician (b. 1874)
- April 15 - Robert Musil, Austrian-born novelist (b. 1880)
- April 16 - Princess Alexandra of Edinburgh and Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, granddaughter of Queen Victoria
- April 17 - Jean Baptiste Perrin, French physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1870)
- April 18 - Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, American sculptor and socialite (b. 1875)
- April 24 - Deenanath Mangeshkar, Indian singer and composer (b. 1900)
- May 2 - Jose Abad Santos, Filipino chief justice of the Supreme Court (b. 1886)
- May 3 - Thorvald Stauning, Prime Minister of Denmark (b. 1873)
- May 7 - Felix Weingartner, Yugoslavian conductor (b. 1863)
- May 27 - Chen Duxiu, General Secretary of the Communist Party of China (b. 1879)
- May 29 - John Barrymore, American actor (b. 1882)
- May 29 - Akiko Yosano, Japanese author, poet (b. 1878)
- June 4 - Reinhard Heydrich, chief of the Nazi Reich Main Security Office and Reich governor of Bohemia and Moravia (assassinated) (b. 1904)
- June 7 - Alan Blumlein, English electronics engineer (b. 1903)
- June 26 - Gene Stack, first American major league baseball player to be drafted during WWII and also the first to die in service (b. 1920)
- June 30 - William Henry Jackson, American photographer (b. 1843)
- July 1 - Peadar Mac Fhionnlaoich, Irish language writer (b. 1857)
- July 15 - Wenceslao Vinzons, Filipino politician and resistance leader (bayoneted to death) (b. 1910)
- July 23 - Adam Czerniakow, Polish engineer and senator (suicide) (b. 1880)
- July 26 - Roberto Arlt, Argentine writer (b. 1900)
- July 28 - William Matthew Flinders Petrie, English Egyptologist (b. 1853)
- August 3 - Richard Willstätter, German chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1872)
- August 25 - Prince George, Duke of Kent, fourth eldest son of King George V (b. 1902)
- September 14 - Ezra Seymour Gosney, American philanthropist and eugenicist (b. 1855)
- October 23 - Ralph Rainger, American composer and Hollywood songwriter (b. 1901)
- November 1 - Hugo Distler, German composer (b. 1908)
- November 5 - George M. Cohan, American songwriter and entertainer (Yankee Doodle Dandy) (b. 1878)
- November 12 - Laura Hope Crews, American stage & film actress (Aunt PittyPat) (b. 1879)
- November 19 - Bruno Schulz, Polish writer and painter (shot) (b. 1892)
- November 21 - Leopold Graf Berchtold, Austro-Hungarian foreign minister (b. 1863)
- December 7 - Orland Steen Loomis, Governor-elect of Wisconsin (b. 1893)
- December 22 - Franz Boas, German anthropologist (b. 1858)
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